Mr. Wilks’ recent attack on one of his constituents (Letter to the Editor, Free Press, Jan 29, 2015) is par for the modern day Harper Conservative course.
While Mr. Wilks proclaims a $5 billion cash infusion into Veterans Affairs, Harper wraps himself in the flag. Neither man mentions that veterans’ claim administrators routinely receive bonuses for not spending the money allocated to Veterans Affairs – a political flim-flam by taking credit for spending money on veterans, while simultaneously being good fiscal stewards by coming in under budget.
Meanwhile services are reduced by closing physical locations in favour of phone apps making it more difficult for non-tech-savvy senior veterans to access service, while also making denial of claims easier via digital disassociation. Furor among veterans erupts. A minister is then replaced with a cheerleader to quell veteran dissent.
Then there’s always the $694,000 in taxpayer dollars spent fighting brain damaged war vets in Supreme Court to prevent them from getting the equivalent of an injured domestic worker on CPP, as well as eliminating lifetime injury pensions to boot.
We should ask Mr. Wilks: How should we recruit more soldiers required for national defense in a hostile world if it’s public knowledge that your government treats them with such contempt after they do their job – which is to sacrifice themselves for us?
Canada is now less safe than it was when the Conservatives took power. Global terror is on the rise. We’ve already sustained deadly attacks on our home soil at Parliament itself. Veterans Affairs is broken.
But the battle cry is still: “We are going to be attacked and killed, so don’t vote for the other guy or we will more likely be attacked and killed.” We’ve already been attacked. Canadians have already been killed.
Canada is less secure, both physically and financially, than before the Harper Conservatives showed up on our doorstep.
Fear of change is, as Mr. Wilks knows all too well, a potent weapon at election time – and that the truth is always the first casualty of war.
Alex HansonFernie, B.C.